But Carl Brown found his years ago.
Aren Almon Kok found hers last June when the man convicted of bombing the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building and killing 168 people here was executed in a federal prison in Indiana.
"My worst fear was that I would turn on the television set one day and have to listen to him explain why he did it," Kok said. "But he's gone now and I know that won't ever happen. It's brought me a little peace I didn't have before."
Others are still looking.
Kok's daughter, Baylee Almon, celebrated her first birthday April 18, 1995. A day later, just minutes after her mother dropped her off at the America's Kids Day Care Center on the second floor of the Murrah Building, Timothy McVeigh arrived in a rented Ryder truck. Inside the truck was nearly 5,000 pounds of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil and a homemade bomb that shattered the Murrah Building and thousands of lives at 9:02 a.m.
Baylee Almon was among those who died. A photograph of her being cradled in the arms of Oklahoma City firefighter Chris Fields appeared on the front pages of newspapers around the world and won a Pulitzer Prize.
For years it haunted her mother.
Eventually, the photograph stopped showing up on television newscasts and in magazines and newspapers. It was replaced with an even eerier image for Kok:
Kok said she grew weary of news reports about what McVeigh or his lawyers had said each day and that he had this or he had that in his cell;
"We don't have to deal with that anymore."
But don't confuse her peace with closure.
"I will always feel the pain," she said.
"Closure is a word I would never use," said psychiatrist Dr. Paul Heath, who has counseled scores of people directly affected by the bombing.
Heath ran the Office of Veterans Affairs on the 5th floor of the Murrah Building in April 1995 and was one of 194 people inside the building to survive the bombing. He has since begun a private counseling practice in Oklahoma.
"What has happened is that the world is full of so many good things that fill our lives, things that are positive," Heath said. "We have too many good things to devote ourselves to for us to focus on the negative."
But Heath acknowledges he's not sure what role, if any McVeigh's death played in that process for most.
Heath was instrumental in convincing Attorney General John Ashcroft to allow a closed circuit broadcast in Oklahoma City of the June 11, 2001, execution in Terre Haute, Ind. The broadcast was watched by more than 200 people directly affected by the bombing.
But Heath wasn't one of viewers. "I felt it was important for some people to witness it," he said. "But it wasn't for me."
Heath, instead, was on hand at the Oklahoma City Memorial on the morning of June 11, 2001, to offer counseling to those in need and he appeared on network television broadcasts.
"I still remember what I said when an ABC reporter asked me how I felt immediately after they had announced McVeigh was dead. I remember saying 'God help us all,'" Heath said. "And I meant help us to find a new positive normalcy to give us balance to be able to deal with (the bombing) and the wonderful world we live in."
For many of us that's what we seem to have found. Though, some have been able to do that better than others.
Carl Brown is one of those.
His daughter, Dana Brown Cooper, was the director of the America's Kids Day Care Center attended by her son Anthony Christopher Cooper and Baylee Almon. Dana and Anthony were both killed in the bombing.
Brown said he and his family mourned for their lost loved ones and moved on with their lives years before McVeigh was executed.
His biggest concern in the days before McVeigh's death was for the killer's soul.
"I felt like Timothy McVeigh was not a Christian. I can't say for sure whether he was or wasn't. That's between him and God. But in my opinion, he never made his peace with God,"Brown said.
As concerned as he was about McVeigh's fate for eternity, Brown said he never waivered in his support of the death penalty.
"I believe he got what he deserved," Brown said. "But we made peace with God over Dana's death long before that. It's history. We've put it behind us."
Kok married five years ago and started a new family.
Her daughter Bella is now 4 and her son Broox is 18 months.
"I have worked to keep the pain I felt and the pain I feel away from my other children," Kok said.
Her wedding in her hometown of Midwest City, Okla., took place with tabloid photographers camped outside. Their constant attention made it hard to put the tragedy behind her.
But as time has gone by, Kok's celebrity status has been redirected.
She is chairwoman of the People First Foundation, a group dedicated to seeing a broader use of light bulbs and windows made of specially coated glass. It's a step worth taking to protect people from shards of glass in the event of an explosion, earthquake, violent storm or other disaster.
Office buildings and daycare centers are her main targets. She kicked off the foundation's work by seeing the special glass installed in the Dana Brown Cooper Head Start Center in Midwest City last year and is headed to London later this month to do the same thing in two daycare centers there.
Heath said the stories of others who turned the tragedy into triumph are endless.
One young woman, Heath said, needed 10 surgeries to regain the use of her right hand and had two miscarriages before finally giving birth last year.
"Her baby just turned a year old," Heath said.
He suggested that so many of the bombing victims have achieved peace that most are unaware that Tuesday will be the first anniversary of McVeigh's execution.
The Oklahoma City Murrah Building Survivors Association has a meeting planned for Tuesday, but not to mark the date.
"Nobody involved in planning that meeting even knew that was the anniversary," Heath said. "That's how little it matters to us. We've gotten beyond that.
Perhaps the execution was a milestone, but we're past it and on to better things."